Anyone here have experience of a fast labour?

(225 Posts)
doubleshotlatte Wed 12-Jan-11 16:54:52

Did you have 3-4 hours, or less, of active labour?

I didn't realise my last labour was considered "fast" until Midwife at first booking appointment told me. So it took 4 hours or slightly less from being 2cm then feeling the urge to push, pushing actively and DD being born. This after 2 days painful contractions and no sleep. I did feel traumatised by the birth, upset at not having had any pain relief (entonox didn't work). Only when I understand that it was a "relatively fast labour" does it all make sense. Now due in a few weeks confused knowing its going to be even shorter shock am trying to plan and prepare better this time...

So, if you knew you'll have a fast labour in advance, what would you do differently? Or did do, in subsequent births?

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Wed 12-Jan-11 17:04:17

I don't really know how long my labour was with ds2 as the MW only arrived (it was a planned home waterbirth) just as his head emerged. But I do know that I went from waters trickling and no contractions, to birth in about 4 hours.

Ds3 is due at the end of April and we're planning another home waterbirth, but I do realise that this labour COULD be super quick. So, dh and I have thought about doing a resucitation course - just incase the baby has trouble and a MW hasn't arrived yet.

If you haven't already, I would think about having a hb. But of course it's a very personal choice.

ethelina Wed 12-Jan-11 17:10:03

First contraction to birth in 6 hours. Was 7cm at 3 hours and delivered 3 hours later.

There seemed to be a noticeable jump as far as I could tell, from "take 2 paracetamol and have a warm bath" at 12.55am to "fuck me I need to push" at 1.05am. He wasn't born til just after 5am though.

BooBooGlass Wed 12-Jan-11 17:13:11

My first labour was an agonising 14 hours. My second was 3 hours, and came as a complete shock. It was a very easy birth actually. I would say, have all you need ot hand, and don't dither about wether you should go to hospital- just go. Tbh next time (if there is a next time) I would probably opt for a homebirth, because of the speed, but also because a fast labour was incredibly easy for me to manage, and had it not been for a horrendous experience first time round I'd probably have had a home birth second time iyswim, but I was convinced I needed to be near the epidural grin

suiledonne Wed 12-Jan-11 17:13:56

DD1 - first twinge (very minor, not a pain as such) to delivery in 4 hours.

DD2 - first twinge (same as on dd1) to delivery in under 2 hours!

What I would have done differently - listened and believed them when they said dd2 would be quicker as I barely made it to the hospital. I should have gone at first twinge as it is a 45 minute drive on bad roads. It is not a journey I would like to repeat in similar cirumstances.

I was fed up with being in hospital on dd2 as I had high blood pressure and was admitted 3 times in the weeks prior to the birth.

On the night I went into labour I decided I wasn't going back to the hospital until I was sure something was happening.

Sparklies Wed 12-Jan-11 17:16:18

I had a precipitous labour with DC1. I wanted a homebirth anyway, but as I was 36w6d they moved me into hospital (I'd gone to 7cm within 20 minutes of it all kicking off with one massive contraction) and labour stalled. I ended up flat on my back with a dragon of a midwife yelling at me to push harder through what later turned out to be a cervical lip she'd missed. The trauma from that most likely caused my incompetent cervix with future pregnancies. The whole thing took 3.25 hours but if I'd not been moved DC1 would have been out within the hour for sure.

I was definitely going to have a homebirth with DC2 for this reason (the ambulance trip likely to stall my labour again) but circumstances conspired (see: birth trauma from DC1) and I ended up with a failed induction at 35 weeks due to complications, and an EMCS. I'm doomed to ELCS now thanks to the permanent cerclage I have for DC3. Not best pleased, but at least I get to have more DCs.

I had a post partum infection after DC1 because some of the placenta was left. I had the injection to speed up delivery of the placenta but because my uterus was atonic (exhausted from the fast labour, basically) it wasn't able to push the placenta out properly. They had to tug on it and they thought they got it all out but three nights in hospital with IV antibiotics two weeks later proved them wrong. According to subsequent better educated midwives I've spoken to, women with precipitous labours should not have the injection for this very reason. So bear that in mind!

FoghornLeghorn Wed 12-Jan-11 17:17:45

Message deleted

devonsmummy Wed 12-Jan-11 17:19:53

My 1st was 2 hours 10 min from first twinge to delivery!
i was in hospital as waters had gone that morning and blood pressure was high.
i had a few twinges but nothing like I thought a contraction would be then they got closer and I told hubby to go get a nurse as it hurt now. She came checked me and I was 10cm - as they started to wheel me to lift to go to delivery suite I started pushing and was whisked into a side room on the ward - DS born 5 mins later!!

I was seriously scared I'd be alone with a toddler and go into super speedy labour with DD - but this labour was 3hr 20min.
got to hospital after an hour of contractions (DH wheeling me through hospital a speed) thinking baby would be here any sec - but she kept me waiting!!

DS was a week early so had my mum fly in a week before due date and DD was 10 days late!

Good luck - youmay not be as fast ou just cant tell

doubleshotlatte Wed 12-Jan-11 17:20:00

:O at Booboo I had no chance for an epidural either, best-laid plans...

Ethelina poor you the toughest bit took the longest shock eek!

Iliketomoveit... wow, how did you manage, first birth and no MW there yet? Even with a planned HB so much can not go to plan confused

purepurple Wed 12-Jan-11 17:21:14

Yes, very fast for both of them, under 4 hours.
With DS I went shopping with a bit of back pain, went home, had one contraction. Fifteen minutes later I had another, then a show. Another contraction ten minutes later, then another five minutes later.
We then left for the hospital with contractions getting closer. Arrived at hospital, was 8 cms dilated. No time for injection. DS arrived after about an hour.
My blood pressure went through the roof grin

With DD, I took DS to school, felt a bit funny, had a bath. Had one contraction, then another ten minutes later, then another fairly quickly.
We left for hospital, they had no beds, had to wait in day room. Finally examined, and was fully dilated. No time for even gas and air to be brought.
DD arrived just after lunch. Blood pressure again went sky high grin

Nevereatyellowsnow Wed 12-Jan-11 17:22:30

Yes my ds was born 3 1/2 hours after the first twinge. I would love to have another baby but its not really an option atm and the thought of another fast labour scares the shit out of me! The main issue that worries me is that I was not believed, I really should have insisted on going in to be examined but of course I believed the (horrible patronising) mw telling me I wasn't in labour yet and to call back the next day. I think if you've had a fast labour previously you will be taken seriously second time around and they will let you in or get someone out to you asap. I went to a debrief after ds' birth and the mw wrote FAST LABOUR in my notes so that if/when I have another baby the mw will see that straightaway.

IngridFletcher Wed 12-Jan-11 17:24:34

Second was 4.5 hours and third wss1.5. Second was great experience, third was horrendously painful!!!!

AntonDuBurk Wed 12-Jan-11 17:24:36

Both my labours started the same way

Vague grumbling period pains, nothing of note
Waters breaking with a pop and a trickle
Full on contractions (1 min apart) within 15 mins

DD - 5 hours from waters going to birth
DS - 1 hour from waters going to bith (& was an unplanned homebirth)

I wasn't "allowed" a homebirth with DS due to health issues but this would have been (and was) the best thing for my situation. I wasn't going anywhere and was fully dilated and in transition within 30 mins.

Homebirth or not, plan, plan and re-plan how you will get childcare for your first DC. In all seriousness I would also ensure that you have a back up plan for homebirth - towels etc.

Ref the pain. I had no pain relief either time. Yes it hurt (smile) but IMO with such a precipitous labour you head straight into "the zone" and it's over pretty quickly!

MaryMungo Wed 12-Jan-11 17:25:49

My first labour:

11.30am-water goes
1pm-contracting every 5 minutes
1.30pm-arrive hospital, 3cm, told to be very silly coming so soon
1.35-Thirty minutes alone as nurse convinces DH to sort car and bags. WORST AGONY OF MY LIFE.
2.00-Nurse arrives after tenth shriek of "I need to poo but I can't!" to see what fuss is about. Fuss is me being 10cm and baby crowning
2.05-DH arrives
2.06-Baby arrives

PassionKiss Wed 12-Jan-11 17:27:28

I think my delivery was quite fast for a first timer - a few hours of minor twinges at home, then it got very intense very quickly and from 4cm to delivery was about 4 hours . . . I was expecting time at the hospital pottering about, eating snacks and reading magazines but it was pretty much all go from the minute I got there. I tore quite badly as well - not sure if that had anything to do with the speed.

Gas and air worked really well for me though so I was quite happy during. Could you maybe try it again OP?

shirleyhyypia Wed 12-Jan-11 17:29:36

Purepurple, do you mean metaphorically or did your BP actually skyrocket? I had 4 hours labour, got to hospital at 10am (7cms) and he was born at 12.20. My BP flew up and he got distressed, I was told that both were caused by the speed!
And I only went to hospital at 10am as I thought my waters had broken!!!

Am seriously concerned that DC#2 will come faster, esp if he/she gets distressed or my BP goes up, as I couldnt even have a HB...

shirleyhyypia Wed 12-Jan-11 17:32:25

PS, I also only had G&A, inc for episiotomy and ventouse.

Antondeburk - I've just bought new towels so will keep my old ones on standby!!

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 12-Jan-11 17:32:41

My third was about 1 hour 40 from start to finish and that included a short period of me attempting not to push. And you know how futile that can be!

dd was my last but if I had my time again I think I'd have just had her at home and saved the 60 mph rush to the hossie and the near delivery in the lift.

Personally it wasn't my favourite birth because it felt so out of control.

shirleyhyypia Wed 12-Jan-11 17:33:32

Couldnt PLAN a HB. Obv no stopping him/her of he decided to come.......

purepurple Wed 12-Jan-11 17:34:49

Yes, it did go up quite fast both times after delivery. They put me in a side room for the first night when I had DS and kept me in an extra night when I had DD. They wanted to keep me in another night but I didn't want to stay.

doubleshotlatte Wed 12-Jan-11 17:36:17

Sparklies thanks for the tip about the injection, poor you had a really hard time with your births. I had no idea things can go so wrong with a fast labour or be so mismanaged confused

I had a dragon of a midwife too, no make em several hmm all yelling at me to push (yeah lady, what do you think my body's trying its best to do?) and one yelling at me not to yell... good grief!

foxytocin Wed 12-Jan-11 17:41:22

I'd say if you are possibly going to have a fast birth, plan a home birth.

I was induced at 38 wks due to PE with no 1 and that was fast but with the induction, who'd know.

No 2 was overdue by a week and from first contraction (a full on one) to birth was under 1.5 hrs.

I just let my body do it. I shouted (v.v. loudly) through every contraction after no.5 and that was v. good to cope with the pain.

DD arrived before the midwives did. Fantastic birth. I'd do that one again.

shirleyhyypia Wed 12-Jan-11 17:44:08

Ahh, mine shot up about half hour before he was actually born (mw was insisting it would be ages yet), and was back down to normal the first time they checked it afterwards. I was being transferred to the consultant led unit as I got the urge to push. In the lift, lol.

MW kept telling me not to, but it wasnt me, it was involuntary! My dad rang to see how I was and the MW said it'll be hours yet. I'm still involuntary pushing so the MW has a look and goes "oh, okay, start pushing"!!

Then he got distressed and MW says "this baby has to come out right now". Am disappointed (prob the wrong word, but cant think of the right one!) as I assume she means EMCS. Then in comes obs doctor with the hoover, and out he comes

shirleyhyypia Wed 12-Jan-11 17:47:03

Its him being distressed that concerns me, if it was just the pain I would def go with a homebirth as I think I coped with it well (think i have a high pain threshold due to monthly migraines since I was a teenager)

I'm just worried that DC#2 would also get distressed, with no hoover to help him/her

doubleshotlatte Wed 12-Jan-11 17:47:13

I agree about feeling "out of control" which I now finally understand why... if only someone had explained to me abotu fast labour I wouldnt have felt so traumatised!

antonduburk good idea about planning for an unexpected HB confused though it scares me silly! am going to look it up right away!

purepurple I had really high BP during labour, birth and just after too and was kept in hosp like forever, ugh. Its possible in both our cases this was due to the fast labour...? hmm

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